The Jamaica government says conch exporters have now been granted permission to pay the levy imposed on each pound of conch exported from the island in installments.
Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Karl Samuda, said exporters had been complaining about the significant financial challenges they face as a result of increased production costs as well as investment cost in maintaining their European Union accreditation.
This has resulted in a struggle for the exporters in growing market share in the extremely competitive European Union conch market. The exporters have expressed a continued willingness to pay the requisite levies, but they seek deferment of the payment in relation to the expiration of the conch harvesting for the 2016 conch season, which is not permissible under the Act,” he said.
Through the passage of the Conch (Export Levy) (Special Provisions) Act revival resolution in the House of Representatives, exporters will be allowed to complete payment within three months of the date of submission of the application for an export health certificate and export license for each consignment of conch.
Samuda said that the levy introduced in 2009 on each pound of conch exported has been reduced from US$0.75 to US$0.50, which will allow the exporters to expand their businesses and further develop the industry.